Gross domestic product (GDP) measures the income and output for the economy of a country. The world GDP has been calculated at $65.61 trillion by the CIA World Factbook (2007). Another comparative measurement of wealth is purchasing power parity (PPP). It is the relative values of two currencies.
Taking into consideration a world-wide view over the largest economies, the United States of America is by far the greatest economy, with a GDP of $13.812 trillion. This accounts for at least twenty-five per cent of the world’s GDP. Throughout the twentieth century, the United States has been the dominant world economy.
In second place is China, one of the fastest growing economies. In terms of purchasing power parity, we are talking about $7.055 trillion. China’s GDP is at $3.281 trillion. Economists say that China might overtake the United States as the largest economy in the world in only a few decades.
The World Bank ranks Japan third in terms of purchasing power parity. The country’s per capita annual income is $37,670, the 25th highest in the world. The GDP is $4.377 trillion.
The world’s forth-greatest economy is India, with a purchasing power parity of $ 2,965 trillion. India’s annual income per capita is quite low: about $1000, but it is a fast-growing economy. Little over two per cent of the world’s GDP is accounted for by India: $54.347 trillion.
Germany also keeps itself in the world’s top five greatest economies, being the largest in Europe. The country has a powerful technological base. Germany is the twenty-third highest in the world in terms of per capita income: $38,860. The GDP PPP is at $2,833 trillion, improving more than 2% in 2007.
The United Kingdom is Europe’s second-largest economy, and the sixth largest in the world. Purchasing power parity is at $2,147 trillion. As far as per capita income, the German people are quite wealthy, with an income of $42,740.
Over the past decade, the eager Russia has been developing continuously. Now it is the world’s seventh economy, having a PPP of $2,076 trillion. Russia’s Prime Minister, Igor Shuvalov, has high hopes, saying that Russia will become the sixth-largest economy in the world by the end of 2008.
Having a purchasing power parity of $2,067 trillion, France is in eighth place among the world’s largest economies. Its per-capita income is at about $38,500, making the French the 24th richest people in the world.
In ninth place is Brazil, with a purchasing power parity of $1,836 trillion, as estimated in 2007. Brazil outweighs the economy of the other South American countries.
Italy is also a large global economy, in tenth place, having PPP at $1,800 trillion. Italians are also very rich, their per capita income being $33,500, resembling those of the United Kingdom and France. During the last ten years, Italy has had a tight fiscal policy.